Shed donation means allotment is complete

Mayberry Garden Centre's community development manager Darren Clift shows off the shed with 2nd Steyning Scouts
Mayberry Garden Centre's community development manager Darren Clift shows off the shed with 2nd Steyning Scouts

TWO years of hard work have paid off and now the 2nd Steyning Scout troop’s allotment site is complete.

The donation of a shed from Mayberry Garden Centre in Portslade means they have all they need to carry on their good works.

Darren Clift, from the family-run firm, said: “We heard about the Scouts’ need, and were only too happy to assist. I was part of the Scouts when I younger and believe it helps round young people and give them skills for later life.”

The troop has been involved with two allotment sites in Steyning since 2010.

They started by assisting plot holders who had been ill, helping them to clear weeds and debris so that their plots could be planted up.

The Scouts enjoyed it so much, they put their name on the waiting list for a plot of their own.

Then, they were asked to work an overgrown community plot at the Rublees Allotment site.

They worked hard to clear the plot, and put up a small hurdle fence, which they made themselves from hazel.

Scout leader Jayne Michalska said: “I have tried to offer the Scouts a varied programme that offers young people the chance to get involved in outside activities that I found fun, interesting and memorable as a child.

“Growing my own veg is something I grew up with, and I think it’s important for young people to appreciate life outside the supermarket.

“Steyning is such a beautiful place, nestled in the South Downs, and is the perfect place to encourage young people into the outside to experience nature at its best.”

The troop was given permission to use the Rublees site while waiting for their own plot and the first year yielded a huge crop of pumpkins, the like of which any allotment holder would have been proud.

In September last year, the troop’s name came up on the waiting list and the Scouts were given their own plot at the Canada Gardens site.

The one thing that was missing was a shed, so the garden centre stepped in and donated an 8 x 6 version to complete the allotment.

Jayne added: “The allotment project we have started is still in its infancy, and over time, I hope to show our young members how to collect seed, grow crops, care for soil and at the same time, encourage them to try what they grow.

“The Scouts that help out will attain their Smallholders Badge for their uniform, but more importantly, what they actually get is a chance to give grow a go, and learn through their own hands on experience about where our food comes from.

Thanking Mr Clift for arranging the delivery of the shed, she added: “No allotment plot is complete without a shed, and the Scouts now have somewhere secure to store their tools.

“We are very grateful for this kind donation and the shed will be used for many years by the young people of 2nd Steyning Scout Group.”